Search found 339 matches

by goaties
Fri Nov 22, 2019 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What does "get back on my feet" mean?
Replies: 70
Views: 4546

Re: What does "get back on my feet" mean?

I think that there is a financial aspect to all this (which does make it appropriate for our forum). Namely, it is clear that Sister has been scammed by her unscrupulous daughter/SIL. Those two may now be looking for new "marks". The OP has shown himself to be a soft touch, to say the least. This ma...
by goaties
Tue Nov 05, 2019 12:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Best CD rates thread
Replies: 404
Views: 44104

Re: Best CD rates thread

1) I am not completely seeing the benefit of the add on feature. Seems to me the only usage is to allow future deposit on a monthly basis. It doesn’t really help if one has a good amounts coming up periodically, say in 6, or 12 months. I set up the add-on feature just in case the 3.25% deal does no...
by goaties
Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fell below ACA eligibility in Medicaid non-expansion state
Replies: 6
Views: 576

Re: Fell below ACA eligibility in Medicaid non-expansion state

Watty wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:30 am
One more thought. He should also look at making a $2,000 contribution to a Roth so that he could get up to a $1,000 Retirement Savings Contribution Credit.
Oooh, nice catch. It's been so long since I've had earned income, I've forgotten about stuff like that.
by goaties
Sun Nov 03, 2019 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No out of network coverage
Replies: 61
Views: 3689

Re: No out of network coverage

willthrill81 is correct - one needs to read their policy. Having said that, good luck. Mine is vague as hell . I think you will only be able to truly understand what is and is not covered is after you incur the costs and are fighting with the insurance company. +1 on the "vague as hell" part. I gue...
by goaties
Sun Nov 03, 2019 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fell below ACA eligibility in Medicaid non-expansion state
Replies: 6
Views: 576

Fell below ACA eligibility in Medicaid non-expansion state

A friend has belatedly discovered that he has earned less than what is needed to qualify for ACA subsidy in our state, despite having the subsidy all year. He's part of the gig economy, so income prediction is well-nigh impossible anyway. Our state did not expand Medicaid, he has no kids, so the que...
by goaties
Thu Oct 24, 2019 12:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA 2020 pricing [What's your 2020 pricing?]
Replies: 38
Views: 4051

Re: ACA 2020 pricing

Yeah, given the incredible diversity of insurance plans, averaging the premiums of such products means nearly nothing. I got a letter from my insurer: my rates are going down a bit BUT they are making the network smaller. So, paying less, getting less! I think the same stuff is going on with non-ACA...
by goaties
Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax: can’t log in
Replies: 59
Views: 5223

Re: Equifax: can’t log in

I just discovered something about the mysterious "can't log in" problem. If I use Firefox, I get the usual "password is incorrect" or whatever it says. However, if I use Microsoft Edge, I can log in with no problem!

Hope this is of use to someone.
by goaties
Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying land - no metes and bounds description
Replies: 14
Views: 1042

Re: Buying land - no metes and bounds description

This is along the lines of what I was going to say. This isn't that uncommon in certain areas. OP, I noticed you said the legal description was "first" written in the 1940s -- is that the last time it was sold? In rural areas that tend to have low turnover & few "outsiders" buying, this is likely n...
by goaties
Wed Aug 21, 2019 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying land - no metes and bounds description
Replies: 14
Views: 1042

Buying land - no metes and bounds description

I am investigating a property which once had a house on it. The deed contains simply the worst "legal" description I've ever seen, something along the likes of "approx 3 acres, across from where X was located". Back in the 40s when this descriptor was first written, I suppose that was okay. They are...
by goaties
Mon Aug 19, 2019 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question on Chronic Conditions and Wellness Exams
Replies: 24
Views: 1805

Re: Question on Chronic Conditions and Wellness Exams

When my doctor started doing this several years ago, they actually sent an explanatory form letter to all their patients about it. That's how usual it is for them to do this! I don't even bother to go for my annual "physical" any more because it has become a worthless little ritual where, as you fou...
by goaties
Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental a Vehicle for a long vacation
Replies: 34
Views: 1859

Re: Rental a Vehicle for a long vacation

One caveat: if you intend to rely on your credit card-provided collision insurance, many cards only insure rentals up to 14 or 15 days in length. My Amex card insures up to 21 days. Check those brochures which came with your cards. (What? You throw those out? :shock: )
by goaties
Fri Jul 19, 2019 8:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Income below100% FPL-danger of ACA subsidy?
Replies: 41
Views: 3134

Re: Income below100% FPL-danger of ACA subsidy?

We are not 65 and do not qualify in our state for Medicare or Medicaid. Each year since retiring and having no income (interest, dividend only but only a few K per year) we artificially created income by converting 15-20k from tIRA to Roth and wrote a letter/uploaded document to Healthcare.Gov as I...
by goaties
Fri Jul 19, 2019 7:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy vs Roth conversions
Replies: 35
Views: 3041

Re: ACA subsidy vs Roth conversions

That is correct. Even if you are on an ACA plan for only 1 month, it is the annual income that determines the subsidy. If you were getting the subsidy applied to your insurance monthly you would have to pay it back if you exceeded the income limits at tax time when that is all reconciled. But wait....
by goaties
Wed Jul 17, 2019 1:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If there are no close or trusted relatives close by, who will care for you, pay your bills, etc.
Replies: 140
Views: 12323

Re: If there are no close or trusted relatives close by, who will care for you, pay your bills, etc.

As a healthcare risk manager, I am often called to the bedside for a consult when a patient is brought in and there are no living or available relatives, guardians or even friends involved in their care or their life, or the family members do not agree on what should be done. What does a "healthcar...
by goaties
Tue Jul 16, 2019 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Being a hands off homeowner
Replies: 51
Views: 3970

Re: Being a hands off homeowner

Good luck, I've had little success finding someone to do home maintenance for reasonable rates. I've literally been quoted way over $100 per hour. I recently tried to get a quote to replace my front door and got $3300. Replacing a front door is about a 4 hour job. Assuming the door is about $1k tha...
by goaties
Fri Jul 05, 2019 7:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The secondary market value for brokered CDs doesn't seem consistent with current interest rates.
Replies: 6
Views: 632

Re: The secondary market value for brokered CDs doesn't seem consistent with current interest rates.

Perhaps it has something to do with what non-brokered CDs are paying. In the past few weeks, I have noticed that the best new-issue 5-year CD offered by Fidelity is paying 2.65-ish while buying a 5-year directly from a bank or credit union still pays a bit over 3%.
by goaties
Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Price as a % of Net Worth
Replies: 20
Views: 1917

Re: Home Price as a % of Net Worth

If you were paying cash for the house, then I think your approach would be a valid one. However, with a mortgage, your concern is easily meeting that mortgage (plus property taxes plus homeowner's insurance) each month. You don't want job loss, extended illness, etc. to threaten your ability to make...
by goaties
Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to dramatically cut down housing cost?
Replies: 19
Views: 3079

Re: How to dramatically cut down housing cost?

Many people are living in RVs now. Whole parks are sprouting up where people live permanently. Not sure what the cost is of doing this is in Ohio, but here's one in Florida: http://www.riversidelodgerv.com/pages/camp_long.htm You can buy used RVs during the winter pretty cheaply (5K for something de...
by goaties
Wed Jun 05, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trip to Vermont/New Hampshire
Replies: 34
Views: 2441

Re: Trip to Vermont/New Hampshire

UVM grad here who lives near the shenandoah’s now. There is no comparison. Vermont is magical in the Fall but will get to peak foliage in late September/early oct. I’d suggest flying to Burlington and driving down through the Mad River Valley. Route 100 is where it is at. Just camp in there. Forget...
by goaties
Fri May 31, 2019 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Older retirees: Are your expenses lower now than in early retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 6627

Re: Older retirees: Do you have lower expenses now than you did in early retirement?

mptfan wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:29 am
goaties wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 7:19 am
I've been early-retired for close to 20 years ...
At what point are you no longer "early-retired?" :D
Ha!
good question. I guess when I turn 65?
by goaties
Fri May 31, 2019 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Older retirees: Are your expenses lower now than in early retirement?
Replies: 49
Views: 6627

Re: Older retirees: Do you have lower expenses now than you did in early retirement?

I've been early-retired for close to 20 years and I would have to say that, adjusted for inflation, my expenses are the same. However, I have always assumed an eventual massive bump-up in medical expenses because that's what happened to my parents. Depending on the disease, one can live for many yea...
by goaties
Sun May 12, 2019 2:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Waiting out the housing market...? No housing that fits our budget.
Replies: 12
Views: 1602

Re: Waiting out the housing market...? No housing that fits our budget.

Sometimes it helps to take an historical perspective. As little as a hundred years ago, most people rented. Only folks living on family land, or the wealthy, owned their property. Then certain forces were brought to bear on the American public (government tax incentives, real estate industry, etc.) ...
by goaties
Sat Apr 13, 2019 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Remote control solution for my parents.
Replies: 38
Views: 2578

Re: Remote control solution for my parents.

Only reasonable solution I can think of is to tape instructions (in larger print if they have vision issues) on each remote. One can say something like "TURNS ACTUAL TV ON. USE RED BUTTON TO TURN ON/OFF." And repeat similar for the 2nd and 3rd remotes. My parents sort of did this for themselves. An...
by goaties
Thu Apr 04, 2019 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surveyor lingo: does 21" ext /swc mean anything to you?
Replies: 4
Views: 723

Surveyor lingo: does 21" ext /swc mean anything to you?

The land adjoining mine has recently been festooned with ribbons bearing the initials of the county health department and some cryptic stuff. Here are examples: 6" ext 17" ext 13" ext 21" ext / swc I'd thought maybe they were something to do with percolation tests, but I couldn't see any evidence th...
by goaties
Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Avoiding tax torpedo at 70.5
Replies: 36
Views: 4953

Re: Avoiding tax torpedo at 70.5

Another thought: you may wish to consider buying into a community, such as a Continuing Care Retirement Community or other age 55+ situation. Maybe not now, but in the future. Buy-ins to such places can be steep, but will serve to reduce the amount of savings which are generating those taxable earni...
by goaties
Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are the purposes of your travels?
Replies: 60
Views: 4032

Re: What are the purposes of your travels?

It's difficult to gain any culture without actually living in a place. Besides, with globalization, culture is becoming somewhat extinct. I am a reluctant traveler, largely because I hate that feeling of having to be constantly problem-solving and negotiating new experiences. In its earlier days, V...
by goaties
Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another Zenni question: Progressive lens?
Replies: 12
Views: 1005

Re: Another Zenni question: Progressive lens?

I find Zenni progressives are as good as progressives I once bought at Sears optical shop for much more money. Both have a very narrow field of vision--if I try to look through the outer half-inch of the lenses, it is a distorted/blurry mess. Checking my blindspot while driving requires "doing The O...
by goaties
Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: HEDGEFUNDIE's excellent adventure [risk parity strategy using 3x leveraged ETFs]
Replies: 3353
Views: 301155

Re: HEDGEFUNDIE's excellent adventure [risk parity strategy using 3x leveraged ETFs]

Re: what has happened to interest rates since the early 80s... not sure if this is an answer, but according to John Williams at Shadowstats, our government began making significant changes to the way the CPI is calculated at that time. See an interesting plot showing what the CPI would be if we were...
by goaties
Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to find inexpensive unlocked phone
Replies: 56
Views: 4300

Re: Where to find inexpensive unlocked phone

Could our OP skip the whole "port to cellphone" bit and instead port his landline number to a VOIP provider? (I used to use Callcentric, which was no-contract and fairly cheap). I understand that VOIP services have kind of gone the way of the horse-and-buggy (how quickly!), but might just be what he...
by goaties
Sun Mar 03, 2019 8:11 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Moving Emergency Fund from I Bonds at Treasury Direct to something at Vanguard?
Replies: 21
Views: 2581

Re: Moving Emergency Fund from I Bonds at Treasury Direct to something at Vanguard?

Vanguard Treasury Money Market Fund is 100% exempt from state income taxes. Vanguard Prime Money Market was, for 2018, 28% exempt from state income taxes--if your state exempts income from treasuries. I think most of them do. https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/USGO_012019.pdf I did the math for my st...
by goaties
Sat Mar 02, 2019 11:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Moving Emergency Fund from I Bonds at Treasury Direct to something at Vanguard?
Replies: 21
Views: 2581

Re: Moving Emergency Fund from I Bonds at Treasury Direct to something at Vanguard?

I would consider keeping the oldest ones--say, the 2003 thru 2007. That's because the fixed rate which is used to calculate your interest rate is quite a bit higher than for the newer ones: https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/research/indepth/ibonds/res_ibonds_iratesandterms.htm#fixed The Treasury ...
by goaties
Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home DIY - increasingly complex repairs and cost savings by DIY
Replies: 38
Views: 3309

Re: Home DYI - increasingly complex repairs and cost savings by DYI

gmc4h232 wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:15 pm

Oh and what is DYI?
Do Yourself In?
by goaties
Sun Feb 24, 2019 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Relocate to Carolinas
Replies: 80
Views: 7579

Re: Relocate to Carolinas

Looks like I was made-to-order to answer your question: I've lived about half my life in NH and half in central NC. I've been pining to go back to NH for years (maybe we could switch houses? nah, mine has too many problems!), but as you have probably found from your research, the COL in NH is high a...
by goaties
Fri Feb 15, 2019 7:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoreau Simplify
Replies: 64
Views: 7186

Re: Thoreau Simplify

Simplification? Dick Proenneke. On video, no less:
http://www.dickproenneke.com/DickProenneke.html

What an amazing and brave soul! The videos are curiously calming and meditative to watch.
by goaties
Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early retirees, how much did you leave on the table?
Replies: 355
Views: 35052

Re: Early retirees, how much did you leave on the table?

I'll tell a short funny story on me. I read the title of this one today, and I got about four entries in before I read a story that fit me to a "T". Wow, I will reply and quote this, I thought, and only then looked at the author of that previous reply. Then, like slowly waking up in the morning, I ...
by goaties
Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof leak, poor workmanship, what now?
Replies: 4
Views: 561

Re: Roof leak, poor workmanship, what now?

There should be step flashing on the junction of the wall and roof. It's a bit more involved than simply trimming the siding. The asphalt shingles do not actually have to go under the siding since the flashing is effectively a metal roof at that point. From your description I imagine that if a comp...
by goaties
Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof leak, poor workmanship, what now?
Replies: 4
Views: 561

Roof leak, poor workmanship, what now?

Looking for advice on how best to proceed. I have discovered that my four-year-old roof is leaking. The roofer had given a "5 year warranty on labor". The problem seems to be that the new roof shingles were much thicker than the old shingles. At the places where the roof meets exterior wall, the new...
by goaties
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Disabled Veteran and spouse - How can we improve our situation?
Replies: 5
Views: 523

Re: Disabled Veteran and spouse - How can we improve our situation?

The state of Florida offers various property tax exemptions for disabled vets. You probably already know that, but in case you didn't:
http://dma.myflorida.com/state-florida-fact-sheet/
by goaties
Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How "Safe" is Your Bond Fund?
Replies: 43
Views: 4560

Re: How "Safe" is Your Bond Fund?

For me, bond funds are "unsafe" because their share price fluctuates and, unlike buying bonds directly and holding them to maturity, there's not a thing you can do about it. That said, I still have a small percentage of my portfolio in them, but I view them as less "safe" than CDs, Tbills, and the l...
by goaties
Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD investment decision
Replies: 55
Views: 4780

Re: CD investment decision

If you are risk-averse and dead set on living off CD interest, then you must insulate yourself from inflation as best you can. I am concerned that you have not yet updated your vehicles. Unless you or someone in your family can provide at-cost auto repair, you are exposing yourself to the uncontroll...
by goaties
Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SP500 Index gives better protection from bankrupt companies?
Replies: 8
Views: 660

Re: SP500 Index gives better protection from bankrupt companies?

Conclusion: The standard recommendation in this forum is for Total Stock, and I use it. However, if, for whatever reason, you just kind of like the idea of the S&P 500 better--possibly because it's the fund Warren Buffett is always mentioning--then use an S&P 500 fund. But do it, shrugging your sho...
by goaties
Fri Feb 01, 2019 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SP500 Index gives better protection from bankrupt companies?
Replies: 8
Views: 660

SP500 Index gives better protection from bankrupt companies?

Theory: an SP500 index fund is safer than a Total Stock index fund because it can better protect investors from deteriorating companies. Reasoning: as market cap of a company deteriorates, the SP500 index people will drop it from the index (as they are doing right now with PG&E). A Total Stock fund ...
by goaties
Wed Jan 16, 2019 9:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When/why have you needed customer service from Fido, VG, Schwab etc.?
Replies: 30
Views: 1852

Re: When/why have you needed customer service from Fido, VG, Schwab etc.?

I have to call Fidelity once per year, but I shouldn't have to. For some reason, I cannot do a Roth conversion online. Each year I joke about my "yearly call" and each year the rep says "you shouldn't have to do this...I'll look into it" and each year it remains un-looked-into. Oh well, gives me som...
by goaties
Thu Jan 10, 2019 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you solve the pre-medicare healthcare riddle?
Replies: 81
Views: 6220

Re: How did you solve the pre-medicare healthcare riddle?

I retired young and have been buying my own health insurance for 20 years, so I've been riding this dragon for a while. It is never easy, the insurance companies are always trying to maximize their profits, and you must strategize anew each year. Currently, the best play is to manage my income caref...
by goaties
Tue Jan 08, 2019 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: simple smart phone
Replies: 12
Views: 1303

Re: simple smart phone

Okay, so you're really grooving on the idea of a tablet which can make phone calls. Got it. I've been thinking about that myself. Here's an article I located which might help you get started: https://thedroidguy.com/2019/01/10-best-lte-tablets-in-2019-1082311 The Samsung looks really affordable...wh...
by goaties
Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Insurance question, DDS 2nd opinion covered?
Replies: 6
Views: 444

Re: Insurance question, DDS 2nd opinion covered?

Even if insurance won't pay, my personal experience says you should get a second opinion anyway. When my retiring dentist sold his practice to young go-getters, they said I needed four fillings. This, after 30 years of perfect checkups. I went to another dentist recommended by a friend. No fillings ...